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How Card Games End

Part of the Card Games For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Beginning a card game is generally pretty straightforward — you deal the proscribed number of cards to the players. However, ending a card game can be a little different. Some games continue until a player reaches a certain score, others require a specific number of deals. The following list of popular card games tells you that you keep playing until . . .

  • Blackjack: The players run out of money (don’t worry about the casino) or decide they’ve had enough.

  • Bridge: One side wins a rubber of two games, then the side with the higher score wins. If playing Chicago Bridge, you change partners after four deals. If playing Duplicate Bridge, you play a session of between 20 and 26 deals — whatever the Tournament Director decrees.

  • Canasta: A player or team scores 1,500 points.

  • Cribbage: A player scores 121 points.

  • Eights: A player scores 250 points (or whatever number is agreed on by the players).

  • Euchre: One side scores 10 points.

  • Fan Tan: One player cleans out all the rest, or when everybody has had enough.

  • Gin Rummy: A player scores 250 points in one game or a series of games.

  • Hand and Foot: You finish four deals. Whoever has the most points wins.

  • Hearts: A player amasses 100 penalty points, at which point the player with the fewest penalty points wins.

  • Oh Hell!: You complete cycle of hands (starting with 7 cards to each player, and then reducing to 1, and going up again to 7 cards). The player with the highest score wins.

  • Pinochle: A player or partnership scores 1,000 points.

  • Poker: The players lose their money or lose interest.

  • President: Everybody gets bored of humiliating one another.

  • Rummy: A player scores 100 points – or whatever total is agreed by the contestants.

  • Setback: A player scores 11 (or 21) points.

  • Spades: One side scores 500 points.

  • Whist: One side wins a rubber of two games by getting to 7 points first on two occasions. At a Whist drive, a session typically ends after 24 deals.

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